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Film Review: 'Inferno' Begins Ablaze, But Later Smolders

by Todd A. Smith

 

Bouchard (Omar Sy, far right) convinces Langdon (Tom Hanks, middle) and Sienna (Felicity Jones, far left) to trust him in Columbia Pictures’ “Inferno” (Photo Credit: 2016 CTMG, Inc./Sony Pictures Entertainment, Inc.).

 

 

Avoiding the Plague 




The Bible says sin alone will lead to the end of the world.


The film “Inferno” starring Tom Hanks says that overpopulation of the Earth will lead to the end of humanity.


Earth is currently home to eight billion people.  But according to the movie, population will double in short order.


That amount of people fighting for survival will only lead to upheaval and ultimately extinction of the human race.


Therefore, scientists like Bertrand Zobrist (Ben Foster) believe that the only way to save humanity is to kill off half of the Earth’s people in an effort at population control.


However, when other evil sorts try to steal the biological plague that Zobrist cooks up, he kills himself rather than turn over his biological weapon to others.


In “Inferno,” Hanks stars once again as Professor Robert Langdon.


He is a respected scholar with very few enemies.  However, he wakes up in a hospital in Florence, Italy unaware of how he got there or who he really is.


Sienna Brooks (Felicity Jones) is the doctor in charge of his care.


However, what should have been a routine stay in the hospital becomes anything but routine, when Professor Langdon and Sienna have to hide in his hospital room in order to avoid a gunman hell bent on killing Langdon.


They somehow escape to Sienna’s apartment where thanks to email messages Langdon’s memory begins to return.


Soon, Langdon realizes that he has something that everyone in Florence is looking for, which is a clue to locate the plague that was stashed by Zobrist before his suicide.


The clues are found in “Dante’s Inferno,” and since Langdon is an expert on Dante, everybody is searching for him so that he can help them find Zobrist’s invention.


The only problem that Langdon has other than people shooting at him is the fact that he cannot remember anything that happened before he woke up in pain at the hospital.


Langdon has two groups of people searching for him, the United States Consulate and the World Health Organization and only one person trying to help him, Sienna.


The question is can Langdon and Sienna connect the dots to the clues left by Zobrist and find the plague before their enemies at the World Health Organization and the United States Consulate get there?


In “Inferno,” Hanks is his usual stellar self, and Jones and Omar Sy, who stars as Bouchard, shine as well.


However, the film and Hanks’ performance are nowhere near as good as “Sully,” which was released earlier this year.


The subject matter in “Inferno” is fascinating but becomes a little dull midway through the film.


The beginning of “Inferno” begins with a blaze, but the film only smolders towards the middle.


The serious subject matter is aided by the comedic sarcasm of Harry Sims (Irrfan Khan), who runs an organization that is also desperately searching for Professor Langdon.

 

And while “Inferno” is not as good as “The Da Vinci Code” or “Angels and Demons,” it is still very fascinating, making one wonder if such a pandemic is possible and what would be done to prevent it if that time came?


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This article was published on Friday 28 October, 2016.
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